Economy

Income up, poverty down across the US

Income up, poverty down across the US”

After a lost decade, Americans finally have begun making real gains, according to a report released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

During that same period, the US poverty rate decreased from 13.5 percent to 12.7 percent, meaning that 2.5 million fewer people were living in poverty in 2016 as compared to 2015. Median income declined and the poverty rate rose during former President Obama's first term as the nation struggled to recover from the Great Recession before starting to improve a bit in his second term. Overall, there were 40.6 million Americans living in poverty in 2016, down from 43.1 million in 2015, Census figures show.

Middle-class household income set an all-time record a year ago, besting the previous high set in 1999, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday. Poverty plummeted to 13.5%, from 14.8% a year earlier.

Median income is a key measure of the economic health of the US middle class, which struggled during the slow economic growth of the early 2000s and was devastated by the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent recession. And the uninsured rate also dropped.

The income gains were fairly broad.

Americans got another raise previous year. The median household income was $59,000 in 2016, an increase of 3.2 percent.



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